During the COVID-19 lockdown, we were encouraged to take up a hobby or try something new. Seeing as there was initially very little for us to do at all. And, in a year as stressful as this one, it's no wonder people have turned to calming pastimes like adult colouring or doing a puzzle. But have you ever wondered what the most relaxing hobby is? The one most likely to lower that heart rate and put you at ease? A global craft community asked just that and conducted a survey to get an answer. Here's what they discovered...
What is the most relaxing hobby of 2020?
Who conducted the study?
At the helm of this little project was global DIY community, Diys.com. It's a relatively new venture that focuses on bringing like-minded people together to create unique DIY products and teach others how to use their DIY skills to the best of their ability. Diys.com partnered with consumer electronics and fitness company Fitbit to discover which was the most relaxing hobby of 2020. They studied just under 2 500 people to make sure the results were as accurate as possible. Here's what they found out about the pastimes most likely to reduce our stress levels...
What are the top 5 hobbies?
It will come as no surprise that the top 5 most relaxing hobbies are all ones that take a long time to complete, and require little to no physical exertion. Of course, these help to lower our heart rates and make us feel less stressed. Coming in at number one is the calming, age-old hobby of knitting. It was found to lower the subject's heart rate by 18.75%, with many recording heart rates of 65 beats per minute.
Next on the list, at number two, was one of South Africa's most popular outdoor hobbies: fishing. Who could feel stressed when standing knee-deep in tranquil waters out there in scenic local fishing settings? This hobby also helped reduce subjects' heart rates, lowering them to 72 beats per minute.
And, following knitting and fishing were the peaceful hobbies of blogging, calligraphy and painting.
What else did the study find?
The hobbies that landed at the bottom of the list were ones that proved to significantly increase heart rates. Hobbies like running, biking and hiking. But, while these cardio-intensive activities will undoubtedly get hearts beating faster, they also produce a feeling of calm and relaxation after the physical exercise is completed. And for those who struggle to clear their minds in order to relax, these activities give you a completely different thing to think about, which can help to ease stress and distract from daily anxieties.
The conclusion could be that if you need to be still and peaceful in order to relax, the top 5 hobbies are for you. But if you prefer to get outdoors and take your mind off anything else that may be bothering you, which in turn helps you to relax, you might look at the bottom half of hobbies in order to produce the same effect. It's entirely personal.
According to the study, these are all the zen hobbies listed in order:
Playing an instrument